Banking, Financial and Economic Awareness

2020-02-22

1. EU's MRL limits do not lead to non-tariff barriers for imports

  • In its review of trade policy at WTO, the EU has said that its Maximum Residue Level (MRL) for pesticides in food items do not lead to non-tariff barriers for imports.
  • India has said that extremely low Maximum Residue Level (MRL) for pesticides in food items that the EU allows leads to non-tariff barriers for exports of food items like rice, peanuts, chilies, spices, tea, fruits (like grapes), vegetables and sea food.
  • Canada has also said Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) measures of the EU should not keep control of international trade.
  • EU has also said that its MRL is aligned with internationally accepted norms like Codex MRL.
  • Non-tariff barriers are restrictions that control trade between nations through means other than tariffs (taxes or duties).
  • European Union (EU):
    • It was formed in 1993.
    • There are 27 members in the EU.
    • Its capital is Brussels (capital of Belgium).

2. Larry Tesler dies

  • Larry Tesler, who created Copy (Ctrl+C) and Paste (Ctrl +V) command has died.
  • Larry Tesler has created these commands in partnership with Tim Mott.
  • These commands were created while Tesler was working at Xerox, an American Company.
  • Larry Tesler has also created find-replace command.
  • These commands became popular after becoming part of Apple's Lisa computer in 1983.

3. Google removes 600 apps from its Play Store

  • Google has removed 600 apps from its Play Store as these violated disruptive ads policy and disallowed the interstitial policy of Google.
  • Google has also banned these apps from its ad monetization platforms, Google Ad Mob and Google Ad Manager.

4. Effective tax rates during 2018-19 declined

  • Budget 2020-21 documents show that an effective tax on profit of companies declined by about 170 basis points from 29.5% in 2017-18 to 27.8 % in 2018-19.
  • As per documents, the effective tax rate with the Dividend Distribution Tax was 30.4% in 2018-19. This was lower than the statutory tax rate of 34.6% in 2018-19. 
  • Effective tax on profit of companies is the tax that companies pay in the form of tax after getting exemptions and deductions permitted in the Income-Tax Act, 1961.
  • In budget 2020-21, the government has announced to remove Dividend Distribution Tax (DDT). DDT is a tax imposed on the company's dividend paid to its investors.

5. Full-fledged launch of multi-utility bill payment solution, Xpay

  • Xpay.Life has announced a full-fledged launch of its multi-utility bill payment solution, Xpay.
  • Earlier, Xpay was launched on a pilot basis. It has also completed it's Beta (trial version) launch and soft launch. The soft launch is the release of a product for restricted users only.
  • Xpay.Life was earlier XIPHIAS Software Technologies, which collected utility bills through cash, cheque, and credit/debit cards. Now, it also operates the point-of-sale (PoS) device and a mobile van.
  • Villagers can pay their bills through the kiosk and withdraw money from a mini-ATM in a van.  

6. Muthoot Finance collects $550 million

  • Muthoot Finance has collected $550-million by the issuance of Fixed Rate Senior Secured Note.
  • The issuance was made in 144A/Reg S format for a 3.5-year tenor.
  • In October 2019, Muthoot Finance has collected $450 million for a three-year tenor.
  • Senior Secured Notes are bonds that are more secure than junior unsecured bonds. 
  • Senior Secured Note-holders are paid first in case of liquidation of the company.

7. Partnership between SBI Card and Landmark Group

  • SBI Card and Landmark Group have partnered to launch co-branded credit cards.
  • Earlier, SBI Card has also launched Lifestyle Home Centre SBI Card, Max SBI Card and Spar SBI Card.
  • They were launched in partnership with four brands of Landmark Group. They are Lifestyle, Home Centre, Max, and Spar.
  • SBI Cards & Payments Services Ltd. (SBI Card) is a non-banking financial company that was launched by SBI in 1998.
  • Landmark Group is Dubai based Multinational Corporation having businesses in Retail, Hospitality and Healthcare.

8. IBBI invites comments on changes in CIRP regulations

  • Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India (IBBI) has invited public comments on changes in Corporate Insolvency Resolution Process (CIRP) regulations.
  • One proposed change in CIRP regulations is the replacement of an Authorized Representative (AR) if creditors of a class are dissatisfied with current AR and 66% of them vote for alternative AR.
  • Under current CIRP rules, AR appointed by adjudicating authority cannot be replaced.
  • IBBI has also proposed simultaneous voting on all available compliant resolution plans and the plan having 66% voting to be taken as approved by the Committee of Creditors (CoC).
  • Authorized Representative (AR) is an insolvency professional that is chosen from three insolvency professionals through voting by creditors in a class as representative of their class.
  • AR is chosen when the corporate debtor facing CIRP has minimum of 10 financial creditors in a class.

9. Chintala Govinda Rajulu as next Chairman of NABARD

  • The name of Chintala Govinda Rajulu has been recommended for the post of next Chairman of NABARD by Banks Board Bureau (BBB).
  • He is currently serving as Deputy Managing Director of NABARD.
  • Harsh Kumar Bhanwala is currently serving as NABARD Chairman.
  • National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD):
    • It was formed on 12 July 1982.
    • It is headquartered in Mumbai.
    • Its tagline is revitalizing rural India through urban support.
  • Banks Board Bureau (BBB):
    • It was formed on February 28, 2016.
    • It started functioning from April 01, 2016.
    • It is an autonomous body.
    • It is headquartered in Mumbai.

 

Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs)

1. How many members are there in the European Union (EU)?

  1. 25
  2. 26
  3. 27
  4. 28
  5. 29

2. Who among the following has created Copy (Ctrl+C) and Paste (Ctrl +V) command?

  1. Larry Tesler
  2. Tim Mott
  3. Steve Jobs
  4. Bill Gates
  5. Lisa Ray

3. Which of the following was in news recently for removing some apps from its Play Store?

  1. Apple
  2. Google
  3. Microsoft
  4. Nokia
  5. Blackberry

4. As per Budget 2020-21 documents, effective tax rate with Dividend Distribution Tax in 2018-19 stood at

  1. 28.4 %
  2. 30.4 %
  3. 31.6 %
  4. 32.8 %
  5. 34.6 %

5. Which of the following has recently announced full-fledged launch of its multi-utility bill payment solution?

  1. Xpay.Life
  2. India Pay
  3. FREECHARGE
  4. Ruralpay
  5. Zpay.Life

6. How much amount was recently collected by Muthoot Finance through issuance of Fixed Rate Senior Secured Note?

  1. $250-million
  2. $350-million
  3. $450-million
  4. $550-million
  5. $650-million

7. Which of the following has recently partnered with Landmark Group to launch co-branded credit cards?

  1. SBI Card
  2. PNB Card
  3. BoB Card
  4. ICICI Card
  5. OBC Card

8. Which organization has recently invited public comments on changes in CIRP regulations?

  1. Ministry of Corporate Affairs
  2. Board for Industrial and Financial Reconstruction
  3. National Company Law Appellate Tribunal
  4. Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India
  5. National Company Law Tribunal

9. Who is the current chairman of the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD)?

  1. Chintala Govinda Rajulu
  2. Matam Venkata Rao
  3. Bhanu Pratap Sharma
  4. Hariram Singh
  5. Harsh Kumar Bhanwala

 

Correct Answers:

  1. C
  2. A
  3. B
  4. B
  5. A
  6. D
  7. A
  8. D
  9. E

 

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